Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The judgement to be Commander in Chief: John McCain was wrong, Barack Obama was right

Should we trust John McCains judgment when he said only three years ago, Afghanistan-we dont read about it anymore because its succeeded? Or should we trust Barack Obama, who more than a year ago called for sending two additional combat brigades to Afghanistan? The fact is, al-Qaida and the Taliban-the people who actually attacked us on 9/11-have regrouped in those mountains between Afghanistan and Pakistan and are plotting new attacks. And the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff echoed Barack's call for more troops.

John McCain was wrong. Barack Obama was right.

Should we trust John McCain's judgment when he rejected talking with Iran and then asked: What is there to talk about? Or Barack Obama, who said we must talk and make it clear to Iran that its conduct must change.

Now, after seven years of denial, even the Bush administration recognizes that we should talk to Iran, because thats the best way to advance our security.

Again, John McCain was wrong. Barack Obama was right.

Should we trust John McCain's judgment when he says there can be no timelines to draw down our troops from Iraq-that we must stay indefinitely? Or should we listen to Barack Obama, who says shift responsibility to the Iraqis and set a time to bring our combat troops home?

Now, after six long years, the Bush administration and the Iraqi government are on the verge of setting a date to bring our troops home.

John McCain was wrong. Barack Obama was right.

Again and again, on the most important national security issues of our time, John McCain was wrong, and Barack Obama was proven right.

Folks, remember when the world used to trust us? When they looked to us for leadership? With Barack Obama as our president, they'll look to us again, they'll trust us again, and well be able to lead again.
-- Joe Biden, the next Vice President of the United States, DNC Convention, 8/27/08

The Myth of a Conservative America

The notion of a "conservative America" has been thoroughly debunked. Actions and beliefs speak louder than a simple isolated poll question.

While many American’s may call themselves conservative, the overwhelming majority of Americans support progressive policies. Indeed, a majority of Americans…
Want universal health care.
Want to expand environmental protections.
Support increasing the minimum wage.
Want abortion to remain safe and legal.
Want federal funding for embryonic stem cell research.
Want to raise taxes on the wealthy to pay for national priorities.
Want same-sex couples to be legally recognized.
Oppose the Iraq war.

A recent survey of the American middle class that a majority of both Democrats and Republicans favor similar policies. And after 8 years of conservative rule, a record 81 percent of Americans believe the country is on the “wrong track.”

Not to mention, the 'generic congressional vote' has been leaning Democratic by a solid 10+ points for years now.

One reason people don't use the liberal label is that the term "liberal" has been victim to a relentless conservative marketing campaign that has succeeded in vilifying liberals and liberalism. Smear is a part of the conservative agenda - even giving rise to the synonym "swiftboating." The consequence is that only strong liberals are willing to identify as such. But many people who hold liberal issue positions call themselves moderates, or even conservatives.

But, lets remember the very definitions of the terms we're dealing with. Tell me, which group would be best suited to cope with a fast changing world? (Roget's Thesaurus list of synonyms)

Conservative: antiprogressive, regressive, conventional, diehard, lethargic, old-fashioned, reactionary, traditionalistic, unenterprising, fundamentalism, inflexible, uncreative, hide-bound, unimaginative, undaring, clinging to obsolete ideas

Liberal: generous, abundant, broadminded, tolerant, enlightened, charitable, free, advanced, flexible, free, giving, hospitable, knowledgeable, latitudinarian, magnanimous, munificent, open

Also, there is a clear correlation between educational attainment and political leaning. Sorry to generalize but it can't be ignored that people living in the "Red States" tend to be fatter, poorer, smoke more, and be less educated. Sorry.

I just hope in 2008, the smart people will get the opportunity to elect a president. I'm dubious.


Monday, August 25, 2008

Michelle at the Democratic convention - a true representation of America

The DNC - a true representation of America

She's awesome....a Harvard Law grad from a family of humble means. With two lovely daughters, Michelle Obama spoke Monday at the DNC.

If you watch the Democratic National Convention coverage, you'll see a cross section of America. 24% of the delegates are African American, 5% are Asian, 12% are Hispanic, 6% are gays and lesbians, 4% are disabled, and 3% are Native American.

Remember this when you watch the GOP convention ... when you look out into that nearly all white crowd of well-fed Republicans, celebrating their candidate McSame and his filthy rich born wife. Interesting comparison ... Michelle and Cindy.

Glad to see the students back... I've seen more Obama bumper stickers in 2 days than I've seen all summer.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Shawn's Olympic statement

In case you missed it, USA Gold Medal winning gymnast Shawn Johnson made a bold statement during her interview with Bob Costas. She also flashed a peace sign at the camera after one of her routines.

This says a lot to underscore the political strife in America...
"old, same, perpetual war" versus "new, young, hope, change, peace."

Which side are you on?

Too bad she isn't old enough to vote. 2012 .

The peace sign is back. America's youth is our future.

McCain victory - a triumph for racism, sign and symptom of America's decline

Great article that shows what could happen and why if McCain wins.

Consider this - what gives?

"With the Bush legacy of reckless war and economic mismanagement, 2008 is a year that favors the generic Democratic candidate over the generic Republican one. Yet Barack Obama, with every natural and structural advantage in the presidential race, is running only neck-and-neck against John McCain... Obama has built a crack political operation, raised record sums, and inspired millions with his eloquence and vision. McCain has struggled with a fractious campaign team, lacks clarity and discipline, and remains a stranger to charisma."

Prejudice usually comes coded in distortions about Obama and his background. To the willfully ignorant, he is a secret Muslim married to a black-power radical. So, with what group is Obama weak and why? Older white voters - for the obvious reason: his race. Here's the evidence in a NY Times Poll:

  • 27% say too much has been made of the problems facing black people

  • 24% say the country isn't ready to elect a black president.

  • 26% of whites say they have been victims of discrimination.

A I've said many times before, the ramifications of a McCain presidency are devastating, not only for the US, but for the world.

What if Obama wins?
"We would finally be able to see our legacy of slavery, segregation, and racism in the rearview mirror. Our kids would grow up thinking of prejudice as a nonfactor in their lives. The rest of the world would embrace a less fearful and more open post-post-9/11 America."
What if McCain wins?
"McCain represents a Cold War style of nationalism that doesn't get the shift from geopolitics to geoeconomics, the centrality of soft power in a multipolar world, or the transformative nature of digital technology. .... At this hinge moment in human history, McCain's approach to our gravest problems is hawkish denial. ... He wants to deal with the global energy crisis by drilling and our debt crisis by cutting taxes, and he responds to security challenges from Georgia to Iran with Bush-like belligerence and pique."
Obama's policy prescriptions are serious attempts to deal with the biggest issues we face: a failing health care system, oil dependency, income stagnation, and climate change. To the rest of the world, a rejection of the promise he represents wouldn't just be an odd choice by the United States. It would be taken for what it would be: sign and symptom of a nation's historical decline.

No, Obama won't do too well in the slave states... and his race will hurt him particularly among redneck older whites... the same group we can thank for the last 8 years of this disastrous chapter in American history. Could it happen again? Perhaps, only in America.

More Bush lies revealed - push for war preceded intel findings

The National Security Archive has released a report based on White House documents showing the Bush administration pressured the CIA and other intelligence agencies to tailor their reports to back-up Bush's desire to invade and that the Bush administration doctored the intelligence "white paper" - making a case for war before the National Intelligence Estimate was even requested.

According to the report, the CIA was under enormous pressure, which resulted in its July 2002 draft of a "White Paper" that did not conform to the facts. This "White Paper" - drafted in July - supposedly summarized the NIE which wasn't even requested by Congress until Sept 2002. Clearly this exposes a systemic practice of lying and manipulation by the Bush Administration. Other accounts by Bush insiders including former CIA employees (Tyler Drumheller, Michael Scheuer, Richard Clarke) square with this account. The picture of these lies are becoming clearer and more complete. So far, over 30 documentaries on Iraq have exposed Bush's lies, corruption and incompetence ... Bush's War - being one of the best.

All the while, during this manipulation of intel and a push for war, Bush was making statements like:
“We are doing everything we can to avoid war in Iraq.” - George W. Bush, Mar. 8, 2003

“I think that that presumes there's some kind of imminent war plan. As I said, I have no timetable.” - George W. Bush, Aug. 10, 2002

"I've not made up our mind about military action. Hopefully, this can be done peacefully...”- George W. Bush, Mar. 6, 2003

Not lying? Then what would you call it?

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Top CIA official confesses order to forge Iraq-9/11 letter came on White House stationery

Central Intelligence Agency's former Deputy Chief of Clandestine Operations Robert Richer says a forged letter linking Saddam Hussein to the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks was ordered on White House stationery and probably came from the office of Vice President Dick Cheney, according to a new transcript.
"I would probably stand on my, basically, my reputation and say it came from the vice president." --Robert Richer
Breaking a 25 year code of journalistic principles and practices, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Ron Suskind that broke this story has named his sources and posted the transcript of the interview of his sources.

American Conservative Magazine has investigated the forgery story and acknowledged it is correct but blames the forgery on Bush staffer, Doug Feith.
"An extremely reliable and well placed source in the intelligence community has informed me that Ron Suskind’s revelation that the White House ordered the preparation of a forged letter linking Saddam Hussein to al-Qaeda and also to attempts made to obtain yellowcake uranium is correct... "

The level of lies, corruption and shear dishonesty of the Bush Administration is stunning... how can any principled American condone this?

Obama sells out 75,000 seat Invesco Field in less than 24 hours

Can you you feel it? Change is in the air.

(CNN)Tickets for Barack Obama’s Democratic National Convention speech at the Invesco Field in Denver sold out within 24 hours, according to campaign officials.

In early July, convention organizers announced the Illinois senator would officially accept the Democratic nomination at the 75,000 seat stadium rather than a 20,000 seat hall.

Conservative religious group Focus on the Family launched a campaign to urge people to pray for rain during this event. Pathetic.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Republicans obstruct vote to lower gas prices

House Republican leaders pressured 13 of their members to switch their vote from “yes” to “no” during Wednesday's vote on the Commodity Markets and Transparency Act (H.R. 6604), a bill designed to rein in oil profiteers. Thanks to these strong arm tactics and weak members, the bill to lower gasoline prices by controlling profiteers failed by a vote of 276-151, falling ten votes shy of the two-thirds majority required for passage under the suspension of the House rules.

Once again, the GOP leadership sided with oil profiteers and used their power to help keep oil prices and profits high, while hurting the average American.

Then they have the balls to pull yesterday's stunt and blame the Democrats. What is wrong with these people? Why are some people so ill informed that they fall for such a stunt, even celebrate it? Are they too stupid to remember the Bush energy policies for the past 8 years that put us in this situation? Can't they remember the last Republican Congress - the 109th "Do Nothing" Congress that met less time in session, failed to pass budget resolutions and appropriations bills, provided no serious oversight of the disaster in Iraq, no major substantive policy achievements, and boasted 18 corrupt Republicans that were investigated/convicted or indicted (including 2 that went to the slammer: Ney and Cunningham)?

Four arrested after attempting Citizen's Arrest of Karl Rove: Judge says, "It's about time"

From the press release from the Des Moines Catholic Worker organization:
The four Iowans arrested last Friday for attempting to make a citizen's arrest of Karl Rove

Retired Methodist minister, Chet Guinn, 80, and Des Moines Catholic Workers, Ed Bloomer, 61, Mona Shaw 57, and Kirk Brown, 25, were arrested at a Des Moines country club where Rove was appearing at a Republican Fundraiser.

Shaw was the first called before Polk County Fifth Judicial District Associate Judge William Price.

After entering her plea, the judge asked Shaw, "Mamn, what were you doing at the Wakonda Country Club?"

"I was attempting to make a citizen's arrest of Karl Rove, your honor," Shaw answered.

"Well," the judge looked up and said, "it's about time."

My thoughts exactly.

Here is the criminal complaint against Karl Rove from the Des Moines Catholic Worker organization.

CNN searches for ignorant Republicans and finds them. Where else, but in Tennessee?

Don't get me wrong, I love Tennessee but why are there so many ignorant xenophobic people in rural white TN? Personally, I'd have no problem voting for Obama if he were a Muslim, even though he's not. I wish he didn't feel compelled to espouse any religion but unfortunately, that is not permitted among politicians in America if they expect to win. The very suggestion that he is Muslim has spread among the racist ignorant like a virus. CNN went looking to find real people infected with this virus of ignorance.

This evening, CNN's Wolf Blitzer asked about Barack Obama, "why is it that there are still so many people, more than one in 10 in recent polling, who still believe he's a Muslim?"

CNN's Gary Tuchman went looking for a place where ignorance lives. He found what he was looking for in Copperhill, Tennessee. He interviewed many residents who believed Obama is a Muslim, including the Mayor of Copperhill.

Here's one of the conversations:

GARY TUCHMAN, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: What concerns you about Barack Obama?

TN FEMALE: The safety of our country if Obama gets in. I do -- he is a Muslim, and I'm very concerned about that.

TUCHMAN: The fact is, he says he's not a Muslim. He says he's a Christian.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, I know what he says. (LAUGHS)

Tuchman said of the roughly 2 dozen people he talked to, all but one believe Obama is a Muslim. Shoot, even my barber from Woodbury thinks Obama is a Muslim.

transcript here

McCain strategy: LIE

John McCain continues to lie about Obama's tax plan, even after his lies have been exposed by independent fact checkers.
Lying is a tried and true Republican strategy (i.e... "moral values," SBVT, et...), particularly effective since their constituency tends to be the less educated and aware - you know, the kind of people who base their vote on fear, buzz words and slogans like cut n' run, tax n' spend, Obama is a Muslim, etc .... without having the foggiest idea of the truth.

McCain and his campaign repeated at least two lines of attack against Obama, which when first said in early July, were called "bogus," "wrong," "inflated" and "misleading" by independent fact checkers.

At his town hall today, McCain repeated that Obama wants to raise taxes on those making as little as $32,000 a year and in his campaign's response to Obama's event in Springfield, Mo., today, repeated that "...Obama’s bad judgment led him to vote in support of higher taxes 94 times...."

For a thorough debunking of the "$32,000 lie" and the lie that "Obama voted for higher taxes 94 times" -- see here and here.

McCain's desperate strategy now includes repeated lies, and that is documented.

Federal Judges rule against Bush Administration - executive privilege claims for Bolton and Miers bogus; must turn over missing emails

The rule of law is a noose that is beginning to tighten around the neck of the Bush Administration - the most corrupt Executive branch in American history.

Bush appointed US District Judge has ruled that the Bush Administration's claims of executive privilege for former staffers Josh Bolton and Harriet Miers are bogus - they must comply with subpoenas about the firing of nine U.S. attorneys. Bolten and Miers must give Congress all documents related to the firings.
"The Executive's current claim of absolute immunity from compelled congressional process for senior presidential aides is without any support in the case law." - Judge U.S. District Judge John Bates

What makes this remarkable is that Judge Bates was appointed by President George W. Bush in December 2001 and appointed to the FISA court by Justice John Roberts in 2006. On many previous occasions, his rulings have helped cover-up for the administration's wrongdoings.

In a separate case, U.S. District Court Judge John M. Facciola ordered the Bush administration to locate the missing emails on laptops, portable media devices, and individual workstations. Emails from Vice President Dick Cheney's office went missing during a crucial period of time when he and aides were involved in stemming the tide of the Valerie Plame scandal.

McCain and the RNC take the low road

Check out these juvenile attack ads by the McCain campaign against Obama:

The first, calling him a Marxist, and the second equating him with oversexed and/or promiscuous young white women, Paris Hilton and Britney Spears... (a la the infamous TN GOP Harold Ford Playboy ad).

Obama's response.

How would you characterize this quote?
“What you’re going to see is a great debate. Which is what the American public deserves. None of this negative stuff, though. You won’t see it come out of our side at all.”

– Cindy McCain, Today Show, May 8, 2008

McCain - a classless act and this negativity shows a desperate loser. Some Republicans are concerned with this trash and have spoken out.